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TV News Roundup: Discovery’s ‘Phelps vs. Shark’ Sets Ratings Records

In today’s roundup, David Haydn-Jones has been cast in a Hallmark Channel film, and “Phelps vs Shark” was Discovery’s highest-rated telecast ever in several demographics.

RATINGS

Discovery‘s “Shark Week” special “Phelps vs Shark” was the network’s highest-rated “Shark Week” telecast ever in adults 25-54, women 25-54, and women 18-49, according to Nielsen data. The special also attracted 5 million total viewers. It saw Phelps attempt to outswim a great white shark, but many fans were disappointed Phelps didn’t actually get into the water with the beast, rather racing against a CGI shark.

CASTING

“Supernatural’s” David Haydn-Jones has been cast as the romantic lead opposite Autumn Reeser in Hallmark Channel‘s new film “A Bramble House Christmas.” Hadyn-Jones will play Finn Conrad, a young man who goes undercover to figure out why his father left a nurse $50,000. Once he meets her and realizes why, however, his original mission becomes less important than winning her heart. “A Bramble House Christmas” is a 4 Ever Christmas Productions. Harry Winer, Kim Arnott and Ivan Hayden will executive produce with John Prince as producer. Steven R. Monroe directs from a script written by Jamie Pachino based on the novel “A Bramble House Christmas” by CJ Carmichael. Haydn-Jones is repped by Tyman Stewart at The Characters Talent Agency.

PREMIERE DATES

“All Def Comedy” from executive producer Russell Simmons will launch a six-episode season this December. The show will be taped before a live audience Oct. 10 and 11 at the Avalon Theatre in Los Angeles, with Tony Rock hosting. Simmons’ previous series, “Def Comedy Jam,” was known for highlighting African-American comedians and launching the careers of such comedy legends as Bernie Mac, Dave Chappelle, Chris Tucker, Martin Lawrence, Steve Harvey, Kevin Hart, Cedric the Entertainer, Katt Williams, JB Smoove, Bill Bellamy and many more. Simmons executive produces with Stan Lathan, Chris Conti and Jeru Tillman. Stan Lathan will direct.

EXECUTIVE NEWS

Jonathan Gabay has been promoted to senior vice president of comedy development and programming for Fox Broadcasting Company. Reporting directly to Suzanna Makkos, Fox’s executive vice president, comedy development and programming, Gabay will be responsible for helping drive development efforts for the network’s comedy slate and leading series coverage on Fox’s comedy hits. Gabay joined Fox in 2011 as manager of comedy development and was subsequently promoted to director, executive director and vice president of comedy development and programming. In this role, he was involved in the development of such series as “Dads,” “Enlisted” and “The Grinder” for the network. Currently, Gabay oversees “Family Guy,” “The Mick,” and upcoming comedy “Ghosted.”

 

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